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Friday 8 December 2023 Dublin: 9°C
Niall Carson/PA Wire

Graham Dwyer trial: Graphic detail of woman being stabbed and raped found in document

Jurors were warned that what they would hear today would be difficult.

A DOCUMENT ENTITLED Killing Darci, detailing the rape and killing of a young American woman was found on a hard drive in Graham Dwyer’s home, his trial has heard.

The accused sat with his head in his hands while the chief prosecutor read out the document, saved as 4Darci.doc in a folder called DD, which was found in another folder called Sub.

The jury heard the evidence on the 31st day of the architect’s murder trial at the Central Criminal Court.

After a short break, Mr Justice Tony Hunt had warned the jurors that what they were about to hear would be difficult, adding that they might have noticed that the audience was smaller than before the break.

Detective Garda Brid Wallace then entered the witness box and explained that the document she found had been created on 2 March 2011, with a total editing time of 89 minutes.

Mr Dwyer (42) is charged with murdering Dubliner Elaine O’Hara at Killakee, Rathfarnham, Dublin on 22 August 2012.

The Cork-born father of three of Kerrymount Close, Foxrock in Dublin has pleaded not guilty to murdering the 36-year-old childcare worker on that date.

Document about killing

Seán Guerin SC, prosecuting, read out the document, which was written in the first person.

The author wrote that he had fantasised about killing from the time he was a teenager.

“Knowing I could decide who lived and who died like my hero, God,” it read.

He said that his addiction had grown, that he soon met willing girls and that he’d acquired ‘two fine subs over the years’.

“I always managed to win them over,” he wrote.

He spoke of the time he first considered ‘crossing the line’ and knowing it was in him.

He said he considered taking the life of a stranger, a video clip he would watch again into old age.

“Having being responsible for creating three lives, wasn’t I entitled to take just one? But who?” he asked.

He wrote that he considered finding someone suicidal or terminally ill, and noted that there were 400 to 500 suicides a year in a small country of four million people.

He then wrote of coming into contact with someone he first knew as Cassie.

“She ticked all the boxes: beautiful, young smart,” he continued. “Critically she wanted to die… a rare marriage indeed.”

He said they worked out the details of how she would die by his hand.

He said that he had been posting her a few hundred dollars at a time so she could settle her debt. He said that she had enough for a bus to Boston and a ticket to Dublin.

He said that she knew her departure would cause pain among her family, but that this would fade in time and would be only a fraction of her pain.

He said she came to him with just hand luggage, no phone and no wallet. She wore the necklace he had sent her, a chain that would soon be his again.

He said she was grateful for what he was about to do. She gazed at the beautiful green scenery as he drove her to a cabin, where she had her last meal and last drink.

“She knew she wouldn’t see another sunset,” he wrote.

He said that they were nervous and that he gave her every opportunity to turn around.

She then tested the sharpness of his knife and posted her suicide video. He said that he was planning to take her belongings to a popular suicide spot.

He said that she turned on her iPod, which was loaded with a carefully-chosen play list. He said that she was turned away from him as he was preparing.

“She did not need to see the shovel or bags of lime,” he said.

He said he stroked her tears away before he put on his mask and gloves.

“She knew He was watching… to take her home to see her gran and old dog,” he wrote. “He did nothing to stop events here and who wouldn’t have wanted such a pretty angel by his side?”

He also said that she would be watching over him after he killed her.

He then described raping and stabbing her repeatedly and slitting her throat while the cameras were rolling. He also described having sexual relations with her corpse.

He said that he took his last photographs of her before soaking her body in bleach.

“She would have been proud,” he said.

He said that he then wrapped her body and put it in his car. He said that it was a short drive to the spot he had chosen for her grave, a place he would visit ‘and ask forgiveness for what I had done’.

The author finished with the words: ‘The End’.

The trial heard on Tuesday from an American woman called Darci Day, who testified that she had met Graham Dwyer on an adult website. She had used the name, Cassie, when visiting such sites.

She said she had struggled with depression and was suicidal, and noted that she had lost both her grandmother and childhood dog.

She said that she and the accused had discussed him ending her life.

Detective Garda Wallace said yesterday that the DD folder on the hard drive also contained an animated-type video of a female having her throat cut and an image of a blonde woman, who appeared to be stabbed.

The detective said she also found a folder entitled EH, which included a document called Diet.doc authored by Elaine O’Hara.

Mobile phone evidence

Earlier, a crime and policing analyst told the court about the last communications between two phones found in a reservoir during the investigation into Ms O’Hara’s death.

Sarah Skedd testified that the phone referred to as the Master phone sent a text message to the phone referred to as the Slave phone on 22 August 2012, using a cell site at Shankill. Sent at 6pm, it read: ‘Go down to shore and wait’.

Ms Skedd also said that there was nothing to contradict the suggestion that the same person was using Mr Dwyer’s work phone as was using the so-called ‘Master’ phone on other dates.

She did a comparison between the usage of Mr Dwyer’s work mobile and the so-called ‘Master’ phone, one of two Nokia mobiles found in Vartry Reservoir in 2013.

The court had already heard that each phone had only the phone number of the other phone saved in its contacts; these were MSTER and SLV, which the prosecution is referring to as Master and Slave.

Ms Skedd said that any time where she could find both phones active in the same period, they were using cells in the same area.

Mr Guerin asked her if she found anything to contradict the suggestion that the same person was using both phones.

“No. I didn’t find anything that I thought contradicted that,” she replied.

Ms Skedd explained that, given both phones used different networks, she wouldn’t have expected them to use exactly the same cell sites.

She said that on the morning of 21 December 2011, Mr Dwyer’s work phone used a cell site at ESB headquarters on Fitzwilliam Street in Dublin, near where he worked. The Master phone used a cell site known as Fitzwilliam the same morning.

She said that the Master phone used a cell site at Howth Harbour at 12.50pm that day. Mr Dwyer’s work phone used a cell at Howth Yacht Club five minutes later.

She said that by 13.42pm that day, both phones were again using cells close to Mr Dwyer’s work place.

She said there was no activity on Mr Dwyer’s work phone between 4.55pm and 8.59pm that day and that his phone could, therefore, not be traced during that time.

The trial has heard that Ms O’Hara was last seen in Shanganagh, South Dublin on the evening of 22 August 2012, hours after she was discharged from a mental health hospital.

A cause of death could not be determined when her skeletal remains were discovered at Killakee on 13 September the following year.

It is the State’s case that Mr Dwyer stabbed her for his own sexual gratification.

The trial continues before the jury of five women and seven men.

Tuesday: Witness tells court Graham Dwyer fantasised about stabbing a woman to death during sex

Monday: Jury told Graham Dwyer sent 53 text messages to Elaine O’Hara in one day